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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

RIAA Drops Allofmp3 Lawsuit; Pretends Mp3Sparks Doesn't Exist

from the maybe-if-we-ignore-our-problems... dept

It's been quite some time since we heard about Allofmp3, the Russian online music download store that offered extremely low prices on DRM-free downloads (you even got to pick your format). The company insisted that it was legal in Russia, and had all the appropriate licenses. Multiple times, the company was brought to court in Russia, and every time, it was found to be legitimate. In fact, the company even tried to pay royalties for the music it sold, but the recording industry refused to accept the payments.

However, the entertainment industry had US diplomats lean on Russia, claiming that if it didn't shut down the site, the US would block Russia's admittance into the WTO. So, eventually, Russia did shut down the site through somewhat questionable means. Of course, within minutes of it being shutdown, the company reappeared under the name Mp3Sparks. In fact, Allofmp3.com accounts worked just fine on Mp3Sparks. And, of course, there are a dozen or so other Russian online download stores that also offer the same sort of deal (and all of which are playing by Russian copyright laws).

For some reason, though, Mp3Sparks just hasn't received nearly as much attention as Allofmp3, and it seems like The Pirate Bay has taken on the role of "public enemy number 1" for the recording industry. So, it should come as little surprise that the RIAA has dropped its lawsuit against Allofmp3.com, saying that the company is now defunct, while totally ignoring Mp3Sparks.

Original here

7 Reasons Kid Rock’s New Song Might be the Worst Ever

So this Hate By Numbers gig was coming along pretty nicely. I knew the deal. I’d search cable news clips until I found something that made me want to shout things at my computer. Then I wrote those things down. But last Wednesday, my friend Matt Tobey sent me a link that changed everything. It was the new Kid Rock video. We both agreed the song was grounds for murder, but it was Tobey’s idea to do it as a Hate By Numbers. Could HBN stray from cable news? I wasn’t sure. Would the readers be thrown? And what about Kid Rock fans? Weren’t they sure to be offended? I could hear them now:

“Screw you, Gladstone,” they’d say while ironing a “These Colors Don’t Run” decal onto their overalls. “Kid Rock’s been nominated for three Grammys!”

And that’s true. But lots of people with no talent have been nominated for Grammys. Like Kid Rock for instance.

Ultimately, I decided to just go for it, and let contempt be my guide as it leads me to fun and exciting new areas of disdain. So here it is. A very special episode of Hate By Numbers.


P.S. Yes, I’m going to get a real green screen for future installments. But in the meantime, I quite enjoy the glitch that makes it appear like I’m wearing blue-tinged braces.

Original here

Sienna Miller Gets Covered In Blood For GI Joe

A lot of fuss has been made about the upcoming GI Joe movie - the most high-profile film about a man with no testicles and swivelly eyes since whatever Orlando Bloom was in last.

However, is GI Joe actually going to be any good? Hardly, because a) it’s got Dennis Quaid in it, b) it’s got The Rock in it, c) it’s got Brendan Fraser in it, d) it’s got Sienna Miller in it, e) it’s got Sienna Miller in it, f) it’s got Sienna Miller in it, and g) it’s got Sienna Miller in it.

However, if anything’s going to give Sienna Miller the fame she’s missed since her boyfriend was caught nuts-deep in childcare worker, it’ll be GI Joe. Not because GI Joe is going to be a good movie, but because Sienna Miller gets to dress up like a sub-Beckinsdale bondage fetishist and stagger about covered in blood in it. The girl knows how to spend the rest of her swamped by stinky boys in comic book conventions, that’s for sure.

If you do want to see on-set pictures of Sienna Miller dressed as The Baroness for the new GI Joe movie, the Daily Mail has a bunch of them. Remember, though, don’t get too excited - it’s still Sienna Miller we’re talking about here.

Original here

'Indiana Jones' graphics meant to go unnoticed


Industrial Light & Magic's Hayden Landis, who was the computer graphics supervisor on the latest Indy film, views stills at the San Francisco headquarters of the Lucasfilm special effects division.

(Credit: Michelle Meyers/CNET News.com)

SAN FRANCISCO--There's just something about that familiar Indiana Jones music. You know it--dun ta dun ta, dun ta da...

Even having spent months slaving over some 540 computer-generated images for the just-released Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the admittedly jaded Hayden Landis still gets excited when he hears that theme song.

"The little kid in you comes out," said Landis, computer graphics supervisor on the film, recalling the music in the opening of the movie trailer. "I grew up with Indiana Jones."


It's that very nostalgic feeling that Landis and his team at Lucasfilm's Industrial Light & Magic tried to create with the film's visual effects--at director Steven Spielberg's request, Landis said.

Whether it was from nostalgia or some other motivation, people have turned out for the movie in force. Hollywood Reporter said Sunday that Kingdom of the Crystal Skull has tallied an estimated gross of $269 million worldwide for its opening weekend, finishing No. 1 in all major markets. In the U.S., the Associated Press reported, the movie grossed an estimated $101 million from Friday to Sunday, plus $25 million from its opening night Thursday.

Spielberg "wanted to make sure it looked like all the other" Indy films, Landis explained Friday in an interview with CNET News.com here at ILM's headquarters. Spielberg even shot the film with one of the very lenses used for the first Indiana Jones film, Raiders of the Lost Ark, which was released 27 years ago.

From a technological standpoint, that meant some challenges in seamlessly matching the computer-generated images (CGIs) to the older film style--lens scratches and all. In that vein, the computer animation couldn't be "in your face," and if ILM did its job, viewers will hardly notice the 45 minutes of CGI in the film, Landis said. Interestingly, about 300 people worked in-house on CGI for Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the same number of people who worked on the film's set, Landis said.

Another technological challenge was the sheer array of types of CGI used in a film which, like its prequels, involves worldwide adventure. "We have a bit of everything in this," Landis said, listing examples like water, space, hair, and creatures.

movie poster

An Indiana Jones movie poster is displayed prominently in the lobby of Lucasfilm's Industrial Light & Magic in San Francisco.

(Credit: Michelle Meyers/CNET News.com)

For example, in a jungle chase sequence shot in Hawaii, to make an area look more like undisturbed terrain, the team tapped into ILM's virtual garden library and added lush plants digitally. A relatively plain road was magically converted into a dramatic cliffside, he said.

ILM also created a new software tool for the film called Fracture, which allows the special effects team to "destroy" (i.e. blow up) huge "set pieces," (i.e. buildings), Landis said. These are things that were never possible before CGI, he added, because of health risks or other constraints.

As for working with Spielberg, Landis called it "refreshing," because the director always had a clear big-picture idea of what he wanted and left the details to others.

Next up for Landis is another nostalgia-oriented project--a redo of the Star Tours ride at Disneyland. The big question...will Captain EO make a comeback?

Original here

True Romance: 15 Years Later

More than a decade after it tanked at the box office, Tarantino, Gandolfini, and others dish the behind-the-scenes dirt on the making of a true cult classic.

trueRomance_article01.jpgOn September 10, 1993, a major motion Picture—penned by future hotshot Quentin Tarantino, directed by action pro Tony Scott, and starring Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette—hit theaters with a brash fusion of stylized violence and whip-smart dialogue. It bombed. But True Romance was born again when it was released on video, achieving cult status among film geeks, rock stars, and regular Joes who got hip to Tarantino after 1994’s Pulp Fiction. Now, on the iconic flick’s 15th anniversary, you’d never guess the saga of an Elvis-obsessed loner who marries a hooker and flees to California with her pimp’s cocaine, was anything but a Hollywood hit. A few of its scenes—cue the Chris­topher Walken, Dennis Hopper face-off—are held in mythic esteem. We corralled the stars and creators to reconstruct the secret historyof True Romance—the production screwups, the on-set madness, and the sex and violence that reverberate so strongly to this day.

[ACT I: BOY SCREENWRITER MEETS HOLLYWOOD]

Tony Scott (director): When I was directing The Last Boy Scout, my assistant was hanging out with this quirky guy named Quentin Taran­tino, and he’d be around the set. She said, “You gotta read his script.” I said, “Yeah, right.”

Quentin Tarantino (screenwriter): When you’re a nobody, it’s murder to get anyone to read your scripts. So my thing was making the first page fantastic, with dialogue that grabbed you right away. The original True Romance script started with a long discussion about cunnilingus. Most people said the script was racist and that the grotesque violence would make people sick. I told Tony, “Read the first three pages. If you don’t like it, throw it away.”

Scott: He gave me two scripts: True Romance, which was his first script, and Reservoir Dogs. I’m a terrible reader, but I read them both on a flight to Europe. By the time I landed, I wanted to make both of them into movies. When I told Quentin, he said, “You can only do one.”

Life Beyond Romance

We all know about Gandolifini and Pitt, but where’s everyone else? A lot can happen in 15 years—just ask Tom Sizemore.

Quentin Tarantino Directorial efforts include Pulp Fiction (1994) Jackie Brown (1997), Kill Bill Vol. 1 and 2 (2003, 2004), and the “Death Proof” part of Grindhouse (2007). Remains an indie icon despite that last credit.

Tony Scott Filming a remake of The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, which, like Reservoir Dogs, features crooks named Mr. Blue and Mr. Brown.

Christian Slater Legal trouble stalled his momentum in the ’90s. Was reportedly Tasered off Paris Hilton’s roof by the LAPD during a 2005 party. Memo to Hollywood: Rewatch Heathers and give him another shot.

Patricia Arquette Starring in NBC’s Medium, the best of the crazy lady with crime-related visions series.

Val Kilmer Continued to portray pop-culture icons with roles as Batman and John Holmes. Voicing KITT in the remake of NBC’s Knight Rider series.

Gary Oldman Perfected playing crazed miscreants through 2001’s Hannibal. Has since mellowed into “good guy” role in Batman Begins.

Dennis Hopper Turn on your TV. Wait 30 seconds. He will materialize, dressed in black, shilling for Ameriprise. Not Blue Velvet scary, but…

Christopher Walken Parlayed turns in True Romance and Pulp Fiction into lesser appearances in every faux-Tarantino film, lately complemented with comedic flair.

Bronson Pinchot Agitated Janice Dickinson on The Surreal Life. And, um... Memo to Hollywood, No. 2: Rewatch
Beverly Hills Cop.

Michael Rapaport Appeared as Phoebe’s slow-witted boyfriend on Friends. And as slow-witted husband in sitcom The War at Home. Is actually quick-witted in Maxim interviews.


Chris Penn RIP, 1965–2006

Saul Rubinek Played Larry David’s dentist, Dr. Funkhouser, on Curb Your Enthusiasm. Do not give him the finger—he’ll have you killed.

Tom Sizemore Appeared in Heat (1995) and Saving Private Ryan (1998). Then went to hell and back. At press time: still back.

Scott got True Romance. Given his blockbuster track record (Top Gun, Days of Thunder) Harvey and Bob Weinstein, whose Miramax Films would also dis­tribute Reservoir Dogs, came aboard as executive producers. Now Scott needed to find the right cast.

Christian Slater (Clarence Worley): I was making Unchained Heart in Minnesota when I got the script. Clarence, the lead character, was an oddball. Not your typical film hero. He obviously spent a lot of time alone, talking to his imaginary Elvis. His brain wasn’t all there.

Tarantino: For most first-time writers, the lead character is your stand-in. Clarence was me. If you’d asked me then if Christian Slater was right for the part, I’d have said no— he was too handsome. I was thinking of Robert Carradine.

Slater: I met Quentin during rehearsal and remember thinking that Clarence was a version of who he wanted to be. I had visions of guys like Quentin who worked in video stores and are energetic about movies, but could never really be Charles Bronson. Tony had a different take. He thought of Clarence as much cooler.

Scott: Christian and I watched Taxi Driver. Before that I think he saw Clarence as softer. I was chasing black fucking comedy, and Christian was looking at it as more of a comedy.

Int. Rae’s Restaurant—night
CLARENCE: Turnoffs?
ALABAMA: Persians.

Patricia Arquette (Alabama Whitman): My agent told me about this script for a Tony Scott movie. There was a lot I liked about it, but I didn’t like when Alabama was sort of racist. By now we’ve all gotten used to Quentin’s tone, but at the time I was somewhat shocked by it. I was asking myself, “What is this? Whoa!” I don’t know if the line about being turned off by Persians was in the script. Actually, every time we shot that scene, I would say a different ethnic group—I wanted to be equally offensive to all people.

Tarantino: When I wrote it, my ideal Alabama was Joan Cusack.

Arquette: Tony really wanted Drew Barrymore as Alabama. He was obsessed with her. He had pictures of her wearing little outfits. But I think she was unavailable.

Scott: We met with Patricia, and Christian had a woody from the first time he saw her. That made my life a lot easier. The viewer believing they’re in love comes from their chemistry. Patricia fell in love with Christian, and he with her. They had a true romance.

Arquette: The material led to this incredibly romantic, magnetized relationship. Christian is charming and funny, and there was a sexual attraction between us.

Slater: It was love at first sight. But working with Patricia was tricky, because I was in a relationship. We both made attempts to be professional, but at that age it was difficult.

Gary Oldman (Drexl Spivey, pimp): I hadn’t read the script, and knew nothing about it. Tony and I had tea at the Four Seasons and he said, “Look, I can’t really explain the plot. But Drexl’s a pimp who’s white but thinks he’s black.” That was all I needed to hear. I said, “I’ll do it.”

Scott: Gary called me out of the blue and said, “I’ve got it. I know exactly who this guy is: He’s my drug dealer.”

Oldman: My drug dealer? Tony would fucking get me arrested, wouldn’t he? I’ve never had a drug dealer! I organized Drexl’s dreadlocks under my own steam. Then I went to a dentist who made the teeth. Then I thought about giving him a weird eye. I’m only in the film for about 10 minutes—I wanted to make my mark. I heard this gang of black kids outside my trailer and thought, That’s Drexl. I showed this kid my lines and said, “Does this seem authentic?” He changed some words. He said, “That don’t fly. Drexl wouldn’t say ‘titties’; he’d say ‘breasteses.’ ”

Tarantino: Those kids were clowning him, and he believed them because he didn’t know any better. Because he’s British.

Int. Dingy Hotel Room—night
BIG DON: I eat the pussy. I eat the butt. I eat every motherfuckin’ thang.

Bronson Pinchot (Elliot Blitzer, drug connection): I got the script during the last days of Perfect Strangers. I read the entire pussy-eating monologue in my character Balki’s accent. People on set were scandalized.

Scott: Meanwhile, Quentin became a sensation around Hollywood. He was making his
indie movie with Reservoir Dogs, and I was doing the big movie. Everybody wanted to be a part of it. Brad Pitt, who had recently done Thelma & Louise, called and said, “Why don’t you let me play the roommate?” I said, “Are you serious? Fucking yes!” because he was on the bloom of stardom. Val Kilmer wanted to play Clarence. I had a different vision, so Val said, “Then let me play Elvis.” For six months before we started shooting, he would sing Elvis songs on my answering machine.

Slater: I watched as many Elvis movies as I could, doing my best to fall in love with him like Clarence does. Elvis the imaginary friend was real to Clarence.

Tarantino: Is Elvis really visiting Clarence, or is it his imagination? I can give you the answer, but I’m not going to. It’s for you to decide.

[ACT II: HOLLYWOOD ACTORS MEET, LOSE EGOS]

trueRomance_article03.jpgWhen filming began, the combination of veteran actors and breakout talent fostered a spirit of collaboration. Together they’d tackle racially sensitive monologues, a vicious fight between a hulking mobster and a petite hooker, and a bullet-riddled climax. Improvisation would be embraced. Tears would be shed. And if the director had to slap someone around, so be it.

Tom Sizemore (Cody Nicholson, LAPD detective): Tony started every take like this: “Rock’n’roll, motherfuckers! Action!”

Scott: Gary would bring his 70-year-old mum to the set. After a take he’d go, “Mum, what do you think?” She’d say, “It’s good,” and he’d go, “What the fuck do you know? It’s terrible.”

Oldman: Yeah, my mother was on the set. She’s seen it all. God bless her, she’s still running around at 88 years old.

Scott: His mum was also there for the scene where Drexl’s dick gets blown off. She said, “Yeah, I thought that was really good.”

Oldman: The gun fired blanks, but there was still a flare and powder coming out of the barrel. I wore a metal cup. I’ve died in a lot of movies, but to have my dick blown off and then get shot in the face with my eyes open, that’s up there. That beats a stake through the heart.

Arquette: I had a hard time with the scene where Clarence tells me he’s killed Drexl and I say, “What you did was so romantic.” I couldn’t jump to that reaction. My acting coach and I came up with the idea that here’s a man I barely know, who killed someone and is eating a burger. He could kill me next. As a female, the way to stay safe is to be in a love bubble. Part of her does think it’s romantic, like, kill all the mistakes I ever made.

The classic standoff between a Mob boss (Walken) and Clarence’s protective father (Hopper) is among the movie’s most memorable scenes. Due to its racially charged language, it’s also the most controversial.

Arquette: I’d worked with Dennis on The Indian Runner and had a little crush on him, but never expressed it. We had this scene where I kiss him, and he goes, “She does taste like a peach.” I had someone go buy this lip gloss from when I was a kid. I wanted him to lick his lips and go, “Wow, she actually does taste like peach.”

Int. Trailer Home—day
CLIFF: Way back then, Sicilians were like wops in Northern Italy. They all had blond hair and blue eyes. But then the Moors moved in there, and they changed the whole country.

Dennis Hopper (Clifford Worley, Clarence’s father): The only lines Christopher Walken and I
improvised in our big scene were my line “You’re part eggplant,” and his line “You’re a cantaloupe.” The rest was written by Quentin. Was I worried about the racial overtones? Not really. Because it’s factual. The Moors did invade Sicily, and they did breed. Quentin writes like people speak. He doesn’t have to be PC.

James Gandolfini (Virgil, Mob henchman): I was glad to just be observing Hopper and Walken. We were crowded into this little trailer when Hopper gets shot, so everyone was offered earplugs. I remember Walken didn’t ask for any, so, being very cool, I didn’t ask for any either. I couldn’t hear for three goddamn days.

Hopper: Tony has this special gun that you fire and flames come out the side. I said, “Tony, you’re not putting that gun right to my head.” He said, “It’s fine, do it to me.” So a crew guy shot him, and he started bleeding. He said, “OK, that won’t work.”

Clarence and Alabama’s plan to sell the stolen cocaine in L.A. allowed Tarantino to add a layer of Hollywood satire to the story. And Scott, whose Last Boy Scout was coproduced by fast-talking über-producer Joel Silver, was ready to inject his own observations.

Slater: I think the movie captured what L.A. is pretty much about. There are lots of shady characters and wacky producers.

Tarantino: I didn’t write the part of the producer who buys the coke to be Joel Silver. Tony turned him into Joel Silver.

Saul Rubinek (Lee Donowitz, Hollywood producer): I was auditioning and Tony said, “You got him exactly right. That’s Joel. You nailed him.” And I said, “Sorry, I’m confused—Joel?” “Joel Silver,” he said. I had no idea who that was.

Scott: The Hollywood satire is affectionate. But Joel didn’t talk to me for a while after that.

The original script set a preliminary drug deal involving Clarence and two wannabe actors at a zoo. But Scott, wanting more action, switched the locale to an amusement park.

Scott: The roller-coaster scene was difficult. Pinchot was shitting himself, and Rapaport was so scared that he dropped a bunch of Quaaludes and couldn’t say his lines.

Michael Rapaport (Dick Ritchie, wannabe actor): I don’t like roller coasters. They had to con­vince me to ride it, and I threw up, so we had to reshoot it a week later. The second time, they sedated me. Some shots show me smiling because I’m drugged out of my mind, and some show me crying because I honestly thought I was going to crap.

Gandolfini: Everybody was young and nuts. Brad Pitt was around, too. I don’t think he was “Brad Pitt” then, but he was great. I just had to watch him and say, “What a fuckin’ flake.” He improvised a lot.

Int. Dick’s Apartment—day
FLOYD (Dick’s stoner roommate): Don’t condescend me, man. I’ll fucking kill you.

Scott: “Don’t condescend me.” That’s not in the script. That was Pitt.

Tarantino: Not only is Brad good, but his scene with the gangsters got the audience laughing so hard. It was one of the best reactions I’ve ever seen in a piece of my work.

Romance’s most shocking scene may be Gandolfini’s brutal interrogation and beating of Arquette, in which both actors bravely push the movie’s trademark blend of eloquence and violence to the limit—and wind up with the bruises to show for it.

Tarantino: At that point in the movie, if Clarence is getting the shit kicked out of him, you know he isn’t going to die because he’s the star and there are 20 minutes to go. But dramati­cally speaking, Alabama could have died. She was expendable.

Scott: Gandolfini exudes both childlike innocence and enormous fucking danger. The fight scene between him and Patricia builds slowly, like a volcano. There’s small talk at the beginning: “You’re so cute—spin around for me.” Then he pops her.

Arquette: First it’s about a girl waiting for her boyfriend to rescue her, and she’s working through her natural bag of tricks: flirting, being dumb. Then Virgil tells her about the transition he made to being a killer. And really, he’s telling her what’s going to happen to her in a moment. She’s going to make this transition, and she’s never going to be the same person.

Gandolfini: Patricia was totally down with it—she was very strong and tough. I’d do something to her character, and her stunt woman would call me a pussy.

Arquette: My mind wasn’t where I wanted to be, so Tony said, “Do you want me to help you?” I said yes, and he smacked me in the face. I was shocked. I started crying.

Scott: When she couldn’t get herself there emotionally, Patricia used to call my right hand “the Persuader.” She’d say, “Bring on the Persuader,” and I’d have to slap her. She’d say, “Hit me harder!” I’d stand there on the set giving Patricia right-handers. That does not happen a lot with me and actors.

Gandolfini: It was a little rough. There was a lot of throwing. You didn’t see that often with a man and woman. I ended up doing it a lot on The Sopranos for some reason.

Pinchot: I can’t watch the scene where Patricia’s being beat up. It’s so good it makes me sick. Chris Penn and Tom Sizemore were also amazing as the cops who make me wear a wire to the drug deal. We did takes where Chris slapped me across the face with the bag of coke, then grabbed me in a stranglehold and smashed my head on the table. There’s some woman talking about her boobs, and all of a sudden Chris Penn is strangling me.

Sizemore: It was tough keeping a straight face during the scenes with Bronson. It was very funny when he had the listening device in his crotch. My laughs in that scene are authentic.

Back to: Elevator
With the .38 up against Elliot’s head, Clarence puts his palm over the top of the gun to shield himself from the splatter. Alabama and Dick can’t believe what he’s gonna do.

Pinchot: When Clarence pulls the gun in the elevator, my character fucking loses it. If you’re going to do a scene like that, you have to stay up all night. I said to myself, there’s nothing else in my head but reality. Nobody on set is eating a Snickers bar right now. There is only me, and I’m gonna die.

Sizemore: The scene where we’re listening to what’s going on in the elevator was all improvised. We didn’t work on anything. God rest his soul, Chris Penn was a wonderful, underrated actor—a real pro. He also was the brother of Sean Penn, one of the greater actors of all time. So he had a tough road.

Int. Lee’s Suite, the Beverly Ambassador Hotel
This is a Mexican standoff if there ever was one. Gangsters on one end with shotguns. Bodyguards with machine guns on the other. And cops with handguns in the middle. Alabama’s so scared she pees on herself.

Arquette: We filmed the hotel drug deal at the abandoned Ambassador Hotel, where Robert Kennedy was shot. We just called that scene the clusterfuck.

Sizemore: It was a clusterfuck. And the fucking feathers from the exploding pillows were there for four days, man. I got killed in take one, and I had to lay there the whole time with feathers in my mouth.

Scott: In Quentin’s original script, Christian dies and Patricia takes off with the money. All the cynical people die. Rapaport is spared because he’s innocent, and everybody else gets their comeuppance.

Tarantino: I tried like hell to convince Tony to let Clarence die, because that’s what I wrote and it wasn’t open for conjecture. I made this big dramatic plea: “You’re losing your balls. You’re trying to make it Hollywood shit. Why are you doing this?” He listened to the whole thing and then convinced me 100 percent that he wasn’t doing it for commercial reasons.

Scott: I just fell in love with these two characters and didn’t want to see them die. I wanted them together.

Tarantino: When I watched the movie, I real­ized that Tony was right. He always saw it as a fairy tale love story, and in that capacity it works magnif­icently. But in my world Clarence is dead and Alabama is on her own. If she ever shows up in another one of my scripts, Clarence will still be dead.

[ACT III: MOVIE MEETS MULTIPLEX, LOSES MONEY, EARNS FANS]
trueRomance_article02.jpgWhen the movie wrapped, the actors wiped off the fake blood and went their separate ways, while Scott dived into editing and working with Warner Bros. to market his movie. All concerned had high hopes.

Scott: We had test screenings in Orange County. Christian was a date-movie star at the time, so our focus group was a little miscast. Two thirds of the theater emptied when Gary blew away Sam Jackson, and the rest left when Christian blew away Gary.

Hopper: Every time they showed it to an audience, they’d get standing ovations.

Tarantino: Warner Bros. was going to change the title to Reckless Hearts. I called Patricia, Christian, and Tony and said, “Let’s go to the press junket and talk about how bad that title is and how good the real title is. We’ll name the head of the marketing department in every interview so he’s on the fucking hook.”

Rubinek: The movie bombed. I don’t think the studio knew how to market this kind of movie. If they released it today, it would be a hit.

Int. Lee’s Suite, the Beverly Ambassador Hotel
LEE: You know what I’d like to do right now? I’d like to see Dr. Zhivago.

Hopper: I was surprised. The movie had no theatrical life—it came and went in a week. Were people expecting a traditional love story?

Indeed, True Romance made a miserable $11.5 million at the box office. It did receive some good reviews, but not from Senator Bob Dole, who, as a presidential candidate in 1995, lambasted it as an example of movies that “revel in mindless violence and loveless sex.”

Arquette: Senators talked about True Romance because they were advocating more censorship. Bob Dole said our movie was “disgusting”—or maybe that I was disgusting.

Tarantino: I knew Dole hadn’t seen True Romance or Natural Born Killers. I couldn’t believe that a guy running for president of the United States, the land of the free and the home of the brave, was condemning art he hadn’t even seen. You fucking asshole, you’d say anything to get elected.

Sizemore: I was in True Romance and Natural Born Killers. That’s why I went to prison.
[Editors’ note: Using a prosthetic penis to fake a court-ordered drug test didn’t help.]

Hopper: I don’t know anyone in the industry who hasn’t seen it now. It’s a wonderful movie, and not just because I have a great scene.

Rapaport: People still call me Dick Ritchie. I’ve had people come up and start quoting Chris­topher Walken, and it scares the shit out of me, because I don’t realize they’re movie lines.

Oldman: My most quoted line is, “I know I’m pretty, but I ain’t as pretty as a pair of titties.”

Tarantino: People have told me that they put the “You’re so cool” line in their wedding vows. I even met a couple with matching your so cool tattoos. True Romance and Reservoir Dogs were the growing pains for Pulp Fiction’s success. Audiences were seeing something they hadn’t seen before—comedy and violence switching on a dime. They’d be horrified one second and laughing the next.

Original here

Who Might Be The Next Spider-Man?

El Mayimbe here with a HUGE SCOOP to start off the week.

It seems like Spider Man 4 and 5 is going full steam ahead.

Over the Holiday weekend, Kellvin got a tip from a trusted source as to whom may be the next Peter Parker/Spider Man in the upcoming films. Because my batting average has been pretty good lately, Kelvin and I decided to sit on it until Hollywood went back to work today and I can get more concrete info. This morning, I made some calls to my guys, fished around and here is what I managed to find out.

Laura Ziskin and Grant Curtis are tossing names around. NO OFFERS HAVE BEEN YET. That being said, the name at the top of their list to replace Tobey Maguire as Peter Parker/Spiderman is…

PATRICK FUGIT.
You may recognize Patrick from SPUN, WRISTCUTTERS and his breakout performance in ALMOST FAMOUS.

My personal thoughts? Fugit looks like Peter Parker to me.

I also managed to find out that if Fugit doesn’t work out, the Spiderman producers ARE EVEN WILLING TO GO YOUNGER.

Who is the name on that list?

MICHAEL ANGARANO

michaela1michaelf2

Michael actually played a superhero in SKY HIGH and was most recently seen FORBIDDEN KINGDOM. Michael even auditioned for the postponed Justice League film.

You know that Fugit and Angarano played the same character in ALMOST FAMOUS? Angarano played the younger version of William in ALMOST FAMOUS while Fugit played the older version.

So what do guys think?

Stay tuned as more develops.

In the meantime, you guys can follow my updates on TWITTER.

HASTA EL PROXIMO CAPITULO…

…YO SOY EL MAYIMBE!

Original here

Is The Hobbit Dead In The Water Already?

Apparently, not everyone is looking forward to seeing the new adaptation of Tolkien’s The Hobbit.

Well, for starters, there is a deformed bloke in a village in Peru who keeps getting rocks thrown at him and being called ‘Gollum’ who wishes they would forget the whole idea. Saying that, he still has the entire Lord of The Rings trilogy on DVD – gold edition, too.

Then there’s our housemate Steve, who is just odd. And then there is Tolkien’s 83-year-old son Christopher, who just doesn’t like people enjoying themselves.

You know the kind of old man we are talking about. He’s the neighbour who used to look forward to your ball going over the fence, just so he could drive a pitch fork through it while laughing maniacally.

In fact, according to Film School Rejects, even his his own relatives call him ‘cantankerous’ and doubt if he’s ever even seen the Lord of the Rings trilogy in his life.

So what’s his problem? Well, again, according to Film School Rejects, he wants to shut down filming of the fantasy classic on the grounds New Line Cinema owe him bundles of cash (cue more maniacal laughter).

In fact, he is going to court in California on June 6 to ask that the rights to The Hobbit – which will be split into two films and will now star Ron Perlman - are terminated.

He says the only reason his father sold the rights in the first place was to pay for a tax bill. And now he wants them back.

Now, we at hecklerspray are no legal eagles, but we still don’t see how he has a furry, big foot to stand on.

If you sold something to pay for something else, however annoying, you no longer own it, right?

If not, well, just think of what we could claim back.

Anyway, he is still owed £80m under an agreement which gave the family a 7.5 per cent share of the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

And judging by the lengths Peter Jackson had to go to just to get paid by New Line, it’s not surprising he is pretty angry with them.

He also has an ace up his sleeve.

He owns the rights to Tolkien’s novel and LOTR companian The Silmarillion, which director and Hobbit look-a-like Guillermo Del Toro and producer Peter Jackson hope to use while making the second film.

So we are sure something will be sorted out in time for the project to go ahead. At least we know who the REAL Lord of the Rings is.

Original here